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In Greek legend a king of Egypt. His name is not to be found in any of the genealogies of the Pharoahs, but it may be a corruption of the name of the god Osiris. Busiris was a very cruel king and the harshness of his rule forced Proteus to flee from Egypt. He had also sent a band of pirates to abduct the Hesperides, who were famous for their beauty. Heracles, while on his journey to get the golden apples, met and killed the pirates.

A run of bad harvests fell on Egypt and Phrasius, who was a seer from Cyprus, advised the king to sacrifice a stranger to Zeus each year, to mollify the god and restore prosperity. When Heracles was passing through Egypt, Busiris captured him, bound him, gave him a crown of flowers and led him to the altar as a victim, but Heracles burst his bonds, and killed Busiris, his son Iphidamas (or Amphidamas), Chalbes the herald and all the spectators.

Busiris was the son of Poseidon and Lysianassa (Table 3). He had been put on the throne of Egypt by Osiris, when the latter had left on his great expedition round the world.


Table of Sources
- Diod. Sic. 1, 17, 45; 4, 18, 1; 4, 27, 3
- Apollod. Bibl. 2, 5, 11
- Hdt. 2, 45
- Gellius NA 2, 6
- Macrob. Sat. 6, 7
- Virgil, Georg. 3, 5 with Serv. ad loc.
- Hyg. Fab. 31, 56; 157
- Ovid, Met. 9, 183
- Etymol. Magn. s.v.
- Euripides Busiris (lost satyr-play Nauck TGF, edn 2, pp. 452f)
- See A. B. Lloyd, Herodotus II (1976) on Hdt. 2, 45

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